WCS EIC honored

WCS Superintendent Jason Golden (left) stands with CCTE Director Jeremy Qualls and CCTE Assistant Director Paula Chilton.

A Williamson County Schools program is being honored by the state for its innovation and outstanding success, according to a report from InFocus.

During its annual convention last month, the Tennessee School Boards Association (TSBA) awarded the 2021 Award for Excellence in Education Program to the Williamson County Board of Education for the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center (EIC).

The EIC, part of the district's College, Career and Technical Education (CCTE) department, allows students to work with local mentors to transform ideas and passions into business opportunities.

"We were very excited and shocked that we were considered for the award," WCS CCTE Director Jeremy Qualls said. "It goes to show the uniqueness of the facility and program, and we are glad that the students and teachers are getting recognized for their hard work."

The EIC opened to rising 10th- through 12th-grade students in the fall of 2019, and over the past three years, the enrollment number has increased to 180 students.

In the fall of the 2021-22 school year, students at the EIC began working with the Tennessee Titans to create a marketing and content plan.

"It is so beneficial to any student who has the opportunity to participate," Qualls said. "The ability to work within a team of people to create a business, product or service sets this program apart. We organically prepare students to be great thinkers and problem-solvers."

WCS received a glass trophy from the TSBA in recognition of the award.